I work at tech support. It’s not exactly glamorous… but it’s an awesome learning experience. One of my favorite sights at work: the inside of a computer. The motherboard, the hub, the source of all knowledge… the motherboard is what gives the computer it’s purpose, and allows it to fulfill all the tasks. So that’s neat.

However, that’s not really why I love the inside of a computer. When I see the inside of a computer, like this mac in the featured image, it reminds me of flying over a city at night. Each little building, all the little lights, all the little dots on the motherboard… they have purpose. Each little light on in the city has a purpose. One light is a teen girl’s computer as she blogs her thoughts in words. One light is a family playing late night board games and laughing around the table. One light is a college student, studying all night for a chemistry final. One light is a flashlight under a blanket, a student staying awake and discovering a passion for reading. One light is a grandma knitting a blanket. One light is two newlyweds dancing around their apartment. Each light, each tiny dot, each moment, has purpose. Each of these lights, these dots, symbolize a part of a working whole. The little boxes or buildings on the motherboard landscape could be a school where learning happens or the factory that employs half the city. Each thing, each place, has purpose.

We are the motherboard. We are the ones who make the decisions that truly impact our system as a whole. In order for the system to work efficiently, each piece should fulfill its purpose.

I’ve been trying to do things lately that have a purpose, avoiding spending (too much) time watching Netflix or just sitting around on my phone. I know, however, that these things have their time and their purpose of relaxation and fulfillment.

I’m trying to prioritize according to things that matter rather than find purpose in mundane tasks. Last week, I sat down to watch some Netflix. Then I decided to call my mom instead. We had an awesome hour-long conversation that lifted me up for the whole day and eased some homesickness.

My mission for this (week/month/insert time frame here) is to seek purpose in my life, realize and utilize it, and to act on my purpose and find purpose in others.

I want to remember the motherboard, and how each tiny piece has it’s purpose to make the system run. I want to be a light in a city as someone flies overhead and thinks of the possibilities. I want to be the light in someone’s life. I want to be filled with purpose and belonging and aim to make my light in the dark city shine brightly and to make my system, my society, the best it can possibly be.

There is so many quotes about what the purpose of life is. I love all of them. There are so many purposes in life. Everyone has a different one. What is your purpose? How do you define it?




“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously.” – Steve Maraboli

“The purpose of life is to contribute in some way to making things better.” – Robert F. Kennedy

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” – Eleanor Roosevelt


kid in a candy store

IMG_6246“I want to look at life like a kid in a candy store.”

This is how I captioned my Instagram photo earlier today, (@alexfarbie),  following a visit to an adorable little shop called Goodies Handmade Candies in Spirit Lake, Iowa during a little midday adventure as I visit a friend.

There wasn’t any long thought process that went into this caption, it kind of just came to me…. but it really got me thinking! It’s crazy how something profound can come around in the simplest way.

Think of it: a kid in a candy store. Eyes wide, mouth open and watering, and eager anticipation of what is to come. Bright colored jelly beans, delicate chocolates.. each of these can act as a metaphor for opportunities waiting to be unwrapped and savored.

It’s a new year, and it is now time to re-open our eyes to the world and see the beauty and opportunity that surrounds us to devour every worldly candy that is offered to us in life.

I am slowly learning to overcome fear and anxiety and to consume adventure and the happiness that can come from new places and experiences. Today, we took a detour to a small town candy store and it sparked not only hunger but deep thoughts in my mind.

Each day I am shown the true beauty of my surroundings and given the opportunity to scoop up life’s colorful jellybeans by the handful and not to pick out the icky flavors but instead learn to fill my next handful with more of my favorites. Maybe it’s time to add a few nutty friends to your fudge. Maybe the sticky taffy is life telling you to shut up and listen for a little while. Maybe that one’s sour, but the next one is oh-so-sweet. Maybe it’s time to have a salad… or mix a few candy flavors and call it one.

So yes, I want to look at the world like a kid in a candy store. I want to see the positive, bright colors and new flavors that the world has to offer. I want to devour the opportunities. I want a sugar high on life. I want to buzz with excitement for each new day. I want a belly ache from laughter, and hope, and love. I want to be a kid in the candy store.

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“A bag of Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans. “You want to be careful with those,” Ron warned Harry. “When they say every flavor, they mean every flavor – you know, you get all the ordinary ones like chocolate and peppermint and marmalade, but then you can get spinach and liver and tripe. George reckons he had a booger-flavored one once.” 

Ron picked up a green bean, looked at it carefully, and bit into a corner. “Bleaaargh – see? Sprouts.”  – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone


“My mama always said, ‘Life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.’” – Forrest Gump


“I want candy.” – Aaron Carter




All I Ever Wanted.

Tonight, I cried. Not only during Mockingjay Part Two… but afterwards, when a girl that I view as a “little sister” and friend gave me a letter, and I took it home to read it.

I open the letter, and I see that it contains two pages. I start to read, and then I come across the words, “This week in Language Arts we got an assignment. The assignment was to write a paragraph about someone in our life who is our role model. I chose you!”

As I finished the letter, I couldn’t wait to flip to the other page. As I read the words, a huge smile spread across my face. My favorite saying to express this feeling is “my heart is so full.” That’s exactly the feeling. Not only am I so utterly proud of this girl and her attitude towards life, challenges and all, but I am so proud to have been a part of her life. She wrote that “Alex taught me that I shouldn’t let what other people think of me, affect how I think of myself,” and that is how I know that I succeeded. In junior high, and high school, it is so easy to believe what others think as truth. I just want her to know how beautiful she is, how smart she is, how talented she is, and how kind she is, and to remember that no one can change her life, and her opinion of herself, but her.

This feeling, this pride beyond belief and happiness beyond words, is all I ever wanted. The words “role model” are probably some of my favorites, because I truly believe you are shaped by your environment and the choices you make. When I was selected for leadership roles, I always loved the opportunity to use my position to impact girls and teenagers and to make them smile. Being a girl is hard sometimes, and it’s nice to look up and see that someone a few years ahead of you seems to have it going in the right direction.

In high school, I wasn’t the homecoming queen, or the star athlete, or the top of my class, or even the nicest. However, I made many decisions that I am proud of. I chose to work hard at school, I chose not to party, I chose to prioritize, I chose to use my voice, I chose to make a difference, and I chose to move on from the little things.

So, no, I wasn’t the prettiest or smartest or best. What I am, I now know, is a role model… and that is all I ever wanted.


P.S. I love you, Emma. I am so proud of the young woman you have become. I am proud to have been your role model.